Five reasons CISOs need to care about fibre security
With all the talk about the cloud, virtual networks, and ransomware these days, it's easy to forget there's a physical network underneath all these digital services that needs security too. It's the physicality of the fibres and cables that take our data from point A to point B that makes them vulnerable in different ways than what you'd typically envision with a hacker attack.
For example, in the San Francisco area last year there were 16 known attacks where the fibre optic cables were physically cut below the city. Today's security threats come from all sides, and chief information security officers (CISOs) must leverage new and robust encryption technologies to ensure data remains protected at all times and in all places.
Part of that requires CISOs to care about fibre—here are five reasons why:
C-level officials need to be involved in data security
In 2015, approximately 1,700 data breaches resulted in compromises to over 700 million records and an average cost of $6.5 million. Attacks to networks or enterprise systems can come from external hackers, malicious insiders, or both.
The cloud actually exists below us
The subsea system of almost 300 submarine fibre optic cables that makes the cloud possible transports nearly all of the world's international traffic. A single disruption of the right cables at the right time could result in a global Internet blackout for an extended period of time.
Not securing data is dangerous and expensive
New government regulations and laws have been introduced to ensure that vulnerable and sensitive information remains protected. Fines for not securing this data in the event of a breach are steep, affecting the company's bottom line. A recently introduced Dutch Data Breach Notification law has fines of up to € 810,000 or 10% of the organisation's annual net turnover.
Traveling data needs protection too
Too often, we focus on protecting our data when it's at-rest on a server or in a data centre. However, it's just as vulnerable (if not more so) while in-flight between diverse data centre locations. Adding optical encryption capabilities reduces the risk of compromise while data travels, whether it's going across the street or across the globe.
A holistic approach is best
A standout data security strategy strikes a balance between server security, at-rest data encryption, and in-flight data encryption. In today's environment, you need to employ the best of all three to keep your data protected—no matter where it resides. The silos are coming down and the number of threats is going up.
The smart CISOs of the future will be the ones who care about the five points above and are able to get ahead of the pack when it comes to securing their data and their networks. So... are you ready?
About the author: Paulina Gomez is Specialist of Product and Technology Marketing at Ciena where she works to increase the profile of Ciena's Converged Packet-Optical solutions and technologies to the market.
Adapted from Why CISO's Should Care About Fiber slideshow on ITBusinessEdge.